Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


TAIC Reports On Fatal In-flight Breakup Of Helicopter At Lake Wanaka, July 2018

Mast bumping caused an in-flight breakup of a helicopter over Lake Wanaka, says the Transport Accident Investigation Commission (TAIC).

The Commission today released its Final Report into the 21 July 2018 accident, which fatally injured the pilot, the only person on board.

The Robinson R44 helicopter was cruising in mountainous terrain in conditions that were conducive for strong turbulence at a speed that increased the risk of an adverse outcome.

Mast bumping occurs when a two-bladed teetering rotor head see-saws (teeters) so much that its inside edge strikes its own main drive shaft (the mast). It can happen in a split second, usually results in the helicopter breaking up in flight, and is fatal for those on board.

TAIC Chief Commissioner Jane Meares says it is likely strong unexpected turbulence caused the main rotor disk to teeter excessively and the mast to bump.

“In this case, mast bumping caused a main rotor blade to bend down so far that it struck and entered the helicopter cabin, the helicopter broke up in flight, descended, impacted the lake, and sank,” said Ms Meares.

“Operators, owners and pilots of helicopters with this type of main rotor need to know that the risk of mast bumping increases with the likelihood of turbulence, mountainous operating environments, high power settings, higher speed and light weight.”

There is no need for TAIC to make a new recommendation in this this Final Report. Three recommendations from 2016 already address the relevant safety issues. We need more recorded flight data, and recorders are being developed for installation in Robinson helicopters. We also need to know more about the dynamic behaviour of two-bladed, teetering, underslung rotor systems, and this is the subject of a University of Maryland study.

In another move, Robinson Helicopter Company updated its R44 Pilot Operating Handbook to define the non-standard term, ‘significant turbulence’, after TAIC noted the potential for misinterpretation.

The TAIC Watch List item on mast bumping already recommends concerted action to promote safe operation of Robinson helicopters

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


TradeMe: Property Prices In Every Region Hit New High For The Very First Time

Property prices experienced their hottest month on record in December, with record highs in every region, according to the latest Trade Me Property Price Index.\ Trade Me Property spokesperson Logan Mudge said the property market ended the year with ... More>>

Motor Industry Association: 2020 New Vehicle Registrations Suffer From Covid-19

Chief Executive David Crawford says that like some other sectors of the New Zealand economy, the new vehicle sector suffered from a case of Covid-19. Confirmed figures for December 2020 show registrations of 8,383 were 25% ... More>>

CTU 2021 Work Life Survey: COVID And Bullying Hit Workplaces Hard, Huge Support For Increased Sick Leave

New data from the CTU’s annual work life survey shows a snapshot of working people’s experiences and outlook heading out of 2020 and into the new year. Concerningly 42% of respondents cite workplace bullying as an issue in their workplace - a number ... More>>

Smelter: Tiwai Deal Gives Time For Managed Transition

Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed to working on a managed transition with the local community,” Grant Robertson said. More>>


OECD: Area Employment Rate Rose By 1.9 Percentage Points In The Third Quarter Of 2020

OECD area employment rate rose by 1.9 percentage points in the third quarter of 2020, but remained 2.5 percentage points below its pre-pandemic level The OECD area [1] employment rate – the share of the working-age population with jobs – rose ... More>>

Economy: Strong Job Ad Performance In Quarter Four

SEEK Quarterly Employment Report data shows a positive q/q performance with a 19% national growth in jobs advertised during Q4 2020, which includes October, November and December. Comparing quarter 4, 2020, with the same quarter in 2019 shows that job ad volumes are 7% lower...More>>

NIWA: 2020 - NZ’s 7th-warmest Year On Record

The nationwide average temperature for 2020, calculated using stations in NIWA’s seven-station temperature series which began in 1909, was 13.24°C (0.63°C above the 1981–2010 annual average). New Zealand’s hottest year on record remains 2016, when... More>>

Quotable Value New Zealand: Property Market Set To Cool From Sizzling To Warm In 2021

Nostradamus himself could not have predicted the strange series of events that befell our world in 2020 – nor the wild trajectory of New Zealand’s property market, which has gone from “doom and gloom” to “boom and Zoom” in record time. Even ... More>>